Shumla South of the Border
In February, Carolyn Boyd and Vicky Munoz spent two weeks in Mexico presenting Shumla's research, representing Shumla on visits to ancient sites and making plans to collaborate with Mexican archaeologists on the study of the Lower Pecos rock art south of the Rio Grande.
We could fill twelve eNews with all that they accomplished and experienced but here is a quick "Photo Diary" of their trip.
The first site they visited was Chalcatzingo, guided by a specialist in Chalcatzingo archaeology, Carolina Meza Rodriguez. There they saw the pyramids and the famous Olmec bas-relief art (700-500 BC) carved into stone slabs at the base of the mountain.
Carolyn presented six two-hour lectures during the trip, to researchers and students at ENAH (the national school of archaeology and history) and UNAM (the national university of Mexico). Julio Amador Bech, Mexican Archaeologist and their host for the trip, acted as interpreter for all her lectures. Her topics included Shumla's rock art documentation method, artistic analysis of Pecos River Style rock art and the interpretation of the White Shaman mural using Huichol ethnography and Nahua mythology. The response to her presentations was overwhelmingly positive and the Mexican scholars are anxious to collaborate with Shumla and use our methods in their research.
Next the Shumla trekkers headed to Teotihuacan with six members of the Tlaloc Project, specialists in Teotihuacan and Mesoamerican iconography. They arranged a surprise for Carolyn and Vicky to go into the sacred "underworld" tunnel built under the Temple of Quetzalcoatl. This tunnel is not accessible by the public. The walls were coated by the builders with shiny pyrite that glittered in the light of their flashlights. After their underworld journey, they visited the Teotihuacan murals painted on the inside walls of rooms within the compound. Julio and the Mexican iconographers were so impressed with what they learned of Shumla's recording and research method that they prepared a grant immediately after this visit requesting funding to be trained by the Shumla staff.
Finally, Carolyn and Vicky were taken to Xochicalco. Their guide, Jose Cuauhtli gave them a four-hour tour through the pyramids and vistas. Then he drove them to a nearby town to view the historic rock art found there.
And this is just the tip of the iceberg. We will be posting more information about this incredible trip and the collaborations that will result on our website and Facebook soon.